Stress and worry can be to the detriment of concentration, along with boredom and day-dreaming, even leading to the need for tension headache treatment.
Although we may be able to concentrate some of the time, or for short periods, many of us need to learn and then to practice constantly in order to perfect this talent. We entertain too many different thoughts and ideas so that our minds end up racing from one thought or idea to another. “Scatterbrain” would sum up the situation very well.
I write blog posts, guest posts and other content on a daily basis, working from home. You have to be disciplined to keep it up but it does help to pace yourself AND to reward yourself with an occasional treat for a job well done!
Worry and anxiety can interfere with your concentration skills
It can be particularly difficult to concentrate if you are experiencing personal problems so that you start to worry about these instead. During such times, allow yourself the luxury of a special time each day when you can literally worry about everything under the sun but you can only worry during that set time and at no other time. Apply this mantra to every concern – “in 5 years time, how important is this going to seem?” If you still find yourself worrying instead of concentrating, tell yourself to “stop”. Use the stop technique every time something happens to interfere with your concentration.
If your concentration is letting you down, what else can you do about it?
Here are 10 top tips
1. Enjoy a period of fun and “time off” before commencing that set time for concentration.
2. Start by giving yourself a shorter and manageable time in which to concentrate, and then gradually increase this time span.
3. As the periods get longer, give yourself a break between concentration periods so that you can have some light exercise, a glass of water or pop outside for some fresh air - but definitely no phone calls or emails.
4. Ensure that your environment is comfortable for concentration – no phones and no TV, although some will find music helps the process along.
5. Are you mentally and physically fresh when you start your concentration task?
6. Ensure that any problem you are experiencing with concentration is actually not about that but rather a lack of understanding of the task to be done.
7. Stimulants are never going to help you concentrate. What you put into your body and your general lifestyle affects the way you concentrate. A healthy whole foods diet with all the right components along with good quality sleep, regular exercise outside and plenty of water to drink are definitely preferable to the use of stimulants, processed foods, sleep deprivation and little or no exercise when upping your concentration levels.
8. A daily schedule that you can tick off helps to focus the mind, holding it steadily on one thing at a time and in the right order. The satisfaction of completing that schedule is an added incentive.
9. Add these concentration boosters to your diet and to your stash of treats – fresh raw veggies (smoothies are a good way to increase your intake), raw nuts, pumpkin seeds, blueberries and more
while steering clear of the sugary processed treats.
10. Remember, it takes thirty days to make or break a habit – so keep up the concentration habit on a daily basis for at least thirty days and you will be well on your way to better concentration and the satisfaction that comes with it.
Concentration has been defined as “the ability to direct one's thinking in whatever direction one would intend”.
You need organization – but more than anything, you need focus.